We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Just like the Annenberg Challenge for Chicago public schools, whose only claim to fame is that Barack Obama was in charge of doling out the research funds. Great executive experience: doling out $50 million plus in research funds with no measurable effects.
Public education can not be reformed. Use the current funding and spread it out in the form of vouchers so that parents can find the best education source for their children. The "government knows best" education system will never work...end it before it ends us.
The frustrating thing is that it is absolutely possible to improve education at all levels and for all people/populations. What cannot be done, and this I believe is the sticking point, is create equal outcomes for all people/populations. And because that isn't possible the left won't opt in to a workable solution.
You could absolutely reach more of the inner city children, teach them better English and math skills. You could expose them to literature and art. At the same time you are bringing up the education achievement of all inner city students you could identify those who would benefit from a more challenging education including STEM and other advanced subjects. This would not be that difficult to do but it would require (enforced) discipline, segregating out the students who were unwilling/unable to study and obey the rules and placing them in a more controlled classroom environment. It would also require either more parental involvement and where that wasn't forthcoming additional tutoring for students not being encouraged at home.
And it would also require the hire/fire authority for teachers and this would be best at the individual school level and not the district or state level. Make the principle responsible for the education and give them the staff to do it and it could be done.
No politician will because education in this country is not about the children it is about the teachers unions and the teachers. And of course every activist that can use public education to prop up their agenda.
It wasn't a plan, wife, it was Wind. It sounds great but has no practical implementation. The equality part was one clue.
You want a practical plan? Abolish the present system and let the market sort it out. Of course, we prefer to fearfully clamor for vouchers, which constitute a tacit redistribution of money and permissions, but I'm talking a wholesale reform of education by privatizing as a practical step.
Would that be hard? Oh hell yes. Is the present system hard on the entire nation? It's the-crux-of-it's-ruin hard. So pick one and let's stop entertaining one another with half measures.
Want more exposure to wonderfulness, as Windy calls it, in places where it's impossible for wonderfulness it to exist almost by definition? If the five biggest companies in the urban landscape had reason to get into education - they already having access to the market - competition would give you more exposure to more excellence than any other method any of us have ever seen.
I'd love to see Walmart and McDonalds get into vending education. Unless we somehow already know that the amateurs that made them and others like them successes in the down-and-dirty urban retail markets couldn't possibly offshoot another successful division when dealt another market the size of Jupiter.
Here's my take on Bill Gates. He was a spoiled rich kid who got interested in the right technology at the right time. I don't think he ever did finish university. I know from personal experience that the wealthy families in Seattle believe that their children don't need an education because they have already grown up in the most intelligent environment available. Yes, they give each other degrees, but you would be surprised at how many bogus degrees are in that community. Having said that let me ask why it is that the "smartest man in the world" Bill Gates was pushed out of his top role in Microsoft at such a young age? Do you really think it was because he wanted to travel around the world being the kindest, bestest man in the world? Let's not forget daddy is a partner in one of the largest most powerful law firms in the world. My thought is that daddy knew sonny boy had reached his limits and "encouraged" him to get out before he made a real fool of himself and lost billions doing it! So now, is anyone surprised when sonny boy's education plans fail? Sheesh.
Gates dropped out of Harvard.
His dad has been a life long lobbyist.
His purported IQ is >150.
He 'quit' MSFT because of a sealed plea deal with the USG.
That deal stopped further anti-trust litigation, and many another thing.
THAT'S why he left MSFT.
Like Zuckberg, he's a sociopath.
Both talk LEFT and live RIGHT... Rockefellers in our era.
Gates is following the Rockefeller script right down the line.
These guys are all cut from the same cloth.